Nothing says ‘freedom’ like playing indoor sports with a group of friends, followed by dinner and drinks. At Sixes Cricket Club, it can all take place under one roof.
A concept from Andy Waugh and Calum Calum Mackinnon, founders of Mac & Wild (arguably London’s best Scottish restaurant), Sixes Cricket Club is dubbed as a ‘social entertainment venue’: a restaurant that’s home to state-of-the-art cricket simulator nets, serving British pub-style food in the separate dining room and drinks from a separate bar area. Initially launched last year, with a restaurant in Fulham, a brand new Sixes occupies the former Villandry site in Fitzrovia, just a 20 minute walk from Lords Cricket Ground. The founders also plan to open venues in Manchester and Oxford later this year.
The only venues in London to provide cricket simulators alongside dining, Sixes Cricket Club intends to transport guests to their favourite cricket greens, ideal for all ages (fun even if you’re not a huge cricket fan). Styled as batting nets, the Sixes Cricket Simulator is an immersive experience, with different difficulty levels and interactive scoreboards, rivalling social entertainment venues such as Top Golf, Flight Club and Puttshack. New for this year, the restaurant is also offering a membership package, which allows members to work from the venue and enjoy unlimited cricket during membership hours (£50 per month for adults, or £75 for a family).
As for the food, the 80-cover restaurant’s menu is specifically designed to follow a similar blueprint to some of the country’s best ‘gastropubs’. Above all, it’s well-considered drinking food: sustaining and deeply comforting. While the food served at Sixes isn’t necessarily as brilliant as that served at Mac & Wild, it’s far better than it needs to be and is particularly suited to the venue. Dishes include the likes of prawn cocktail cups with king prawn, baby gem, and avocado; lemon fried chicken with Kiev butter dip; plump Dorset mussels steamed in cider and served with creamed shallots and leeks. Beef short rib is slow-cooked and glazed with whisky, served with a zesty slaw rife with pomegranate and chive, plus bone marrow flatbreads, like roti, which act as the jewel in the dish’s proverbial crown.
The sharing feast dishes served at Sixes Cricket Club offer the best overview of the menu, however. During a recent dinner, the ‘Sixes Feast’ comprised slices of the restaurant’s superlative sausage roll with its buttery pastry and a dollop of gorgeous piccalilli to accompany; mac and cheese croquette bites; thick triple cooked chips; cheese puff straws, acting as a particularly good beer snack; and generously seasoned coronation bubble and squeak fritters. Best of all were florets of deep-fried cauliflower, lightly spiced and complemented by a heap of pomegranate seeds.
The ‘Orchard Hog Roast’, on the other hand, comprised a cast iron skillet of slow-cooked pork, crowned with crispy shards of salty crackling, to be scooped up with delicious sticky, sweet buns and finished with rich BBQ gravy and a slightly tart cider apple ketchup. Deeply comforting drinking food at its finest, ideal for the occasion.
Sixes Cricket Club Fitzrovia can be found at 170 Great Portland Street, London, W1W 5QB.
This article was updated on Friday 30th July, 2021.